TORONTO — The Tragically Hip bassist Gord Sinclair says he hopes to meet with Canada’s new heritage minister to discuss ways to better “preserve and protect” the country’s live music industry.
Sinclair says he believes Steven Guilbeault, named to the federal position last November, should hear from Canadian musicians on the importance of protecting smaller live venues, often the spots where young artists cut their teeth.
He says it’s those places across Canada where his own Kingston, Ont., band got their start.
The Hip is often held as a prime example of an act that benefited from a strong foundation of artistic resources in the 1990s, including federal content regulations that stipulated radio stations play a certain percentage of homegrown music.
The bassist says he doesn’t know how those regulations translate to a world increasingly reliant on streaming services, but he believes it’s a conversation that needs to be stoked at all levels of the industry.
Sinclair will release his solo debut “Taxi Dancers” on Feb. 28. The album reflects on the loss of Hip lead singer Gord Downie, who died of brain cancer in late 2017.
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David Friend, The Canadian Press